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Dealing with Confidence
The Construction of Need and Trust in Management Advisory Services
Based on studies of the use of management consulting, financial consulting, legal services, and IT services, this book sheds light on how needs in organisations for management advice services are constructed and why certain service suppliers are given trust to deliver.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
Today's organizations are - or think they are - becoming increasingly dependent on external expertise. Procuring this expertise, however, presupposes trust. Creating trust for providers of intangible goods like expertise is to a large extent subject to social construction. Based on empirical study of management consulting, including also legal and financial advice and auditing services, the articles in this book come together to present a concise, fascinating and often unexpected analysis of the dynamic interplay between the construction of the need for expertise, trust in those who supply it, and evaluation of the quality of services received. Alfred Kieser, Professor of Organizational Behavior, Mannheim University, Germany This book offers a very systematic examination of the linkages between firms and the providers of management advisory services and stands out for both the range and comprehensiveness with which it covers its chosen subject matter. The approach to MAS is conceptually highly aware, but does not thrust its theoretical sophistication on the attention of the reader. A constructionist approach to MAS is deployed in highly sophisticated ways, and in this respect, it could well be studied with profit by other analysts. "Dealing with Confidence" is wide in its scope, not only putting the position of professional groups and how they go about their business under the scrutiny, but also, at the same time, taking the reader to the heart of the mechanisms that now regulate economic exchanges. The result is a highly detailed yet also an integrated and almost synthetic account of the ways in which MAS work. Comprehensive, thorough and systematic, this is a very welcome addition to the literature. Its value is not only in what it has to say about MAS as such, but also for what it says about the ways that MAS contribute to the new economic world we now all of us inhabit Stephen Ackroyd, Professor of Organisational Analysis, Lancaster University Management School, United Kingdom